David Beckham and partners paid almost $19 million for about six acres needed to build a Major League Soccer stadium in Overtown, a spokesman confirmed Friday, marking the group’s first known real estate buy in Miami.
Tadd Schwartz, a spokesman for Miami Beckham United, confirmed the purchase amount following a report Friday morning by the South Florida Business Journal. The land deal, announced Thursday afternoon, gives Beckham about two-thirds of the nine-acre site where he wants to build a 25,000-seat, privately owned soccer stadium. The remaining three acres would come from Miami-Dade County, which is negotiating a sale for the truck and storage depot to the celebrity athlete’s organization.
The county land consists of 2.8 acres, and state law requires the Beckham group to pay market rate for the property in exchange for Miami-Dade waiving the bidding rules. Beckham would buy the public real estate under Florida’s economic-development laws for the expedited sale of government land. A county official recently said the Miami-Dade property is valued at $9 million, or about $3 million an acre. The Beckham group paid roughly that amount for the private land.
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While the Beckham group now owns the majority of the planned stadium site, it still must win approval from Miami-Dade for purchase of the county land. Then Beckham must win zoning changes from the City of Miami, which also is being asked to close a street to accommodate the stadium site and for other land-use changes.
The site sits in the western edge of Overtown, north of the Miami River. The two-block footprint is bordered by NW 8th Street to the north and NW 6th Street to the south, with NW 7th and 6th avenues framing the site. Beckham began his public quest for a Miami MLS stadium in late 2013, and Overtown is the fourth location he’s targeted. Despite looking elsewhere, this marks the first time his group has announced real estate purchases.